Synopses & Reviews
During the otherwise quiet course of his life as a poet, Wendell Berry has become mad” at what contemporary society has made of its land, its communities, and its past. This anger reaches its peak in the poems of the Mad Farmer, taking the shape of manifestos, meditations, and insults that are often funny in spite of themselves. The Mad Farmer is a character as necessary, perhaps, as he is regrettable.
Gathered here are poems from Berry's collections offering the teachings and bitcheries of this amazing American voice. With the success of Window Poems, Bob Baris returns to design and produce an edition illustrated with etchings by Abigail Rover.
Ed McClanahan offers an introduction wherein he clears up the inspiration behind the Mad Farmer himself taking more credit than he is clearly due with Berry weighing in with an apology-and characteristic exaggeration. Also included are poems by James Baker Hall and William Kloefkorn showing how the Mad Farmer has escaped into the work of others.
The whole is a wonderful testimony to the power of anger and humor to bring even the most terrible consequences into a focus otherwise impossible to obtain.
About the Author
, an essayist, novelist, and poet, has been honored with the T. S. Eliot Award, the Aiken Taylor Award for poetry, and the John Hay Award of the Orion Society. He lives with his wife on a farm in Henry County, KY.